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Published On: Wed, Sep 19th, 2018

Naira firms up marginally at I&E forex market

The Naira appreciated slightly against the dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) Foreign Exchange window on Wednesday, assisted by new interventions by the Central Bank.

 The local currency was up 0.09 per cent after opening at $/N363.03, traded high at $/N364.75 and eventually closed at $/N362.97.

A total of $112.66 million was transacted at the I&E Forex window on Wednesday.

The regulator injected $100 million as wholesale interventions and allocated $55 million to Small and Medium Enterprises, Isaac Okorafor, director of Corporate Communications, CBN disclosed on Tuesday in Abuja.

He noted that the apex also intervened with another $55 million, which was allocated to customers requiring foreign exchange for business and personal travels, tuition or medical fees, among others.

The CBN spokesperson said the bank was pleased with the performance of the Naira, because it had continued to enjoy stability against the dollar and other major currencies of the world in recent times.

However, the local currency remained flat at both official and official foreign exchange markets.

It exchanged N306.3 against the Dollar at the official inter-bank market forex market and N362 at the parallel segment of the market

The CBN on Tuesday had announced injecting $210 million into Inter-Bank Foreign Exchange Market.

Traders attributed the fall in Naira at the foreign exchange market to gradual move to merge its multiple exchange rates.

The local currency at the apex bank’s interbank closed last week at N306.25 against dollar but depreciated on Monday to N306.3 against dollar.

The country now has at least five exchange rate including the official one which the bank used to mask pressure on the currency.

The Naira has been under some pressure as foreign portfolio investors continue to take flight to safety as the country approaches the 2019 general elections.

The apex bank has sold $500,000 almost on daily basis on the official spot market since creating several exchange rates to alleviate dollar shortages. However it had sold the currency at rates of between N305 and N306 for months before this week’s move.

Meanwhile, the naira on Tuesday exchanged for N361.99 to a dollar in the Bureau De Change segment of the market, while closing flat at N361 against the dollar in the parallel market.

Okorafor reassured the public that the CBN would continue to intervene in the interbank foreign exchange market to ensure liquidity in the foreign exchange market and maintain stability.

The CBN last week Tuesday had injected $303.91 million and 46.58 million Chinese Yuan into the Spot and Short-tenored Forwards segment of the Inter-Bank Foreign Exchange Market.

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